Michigan No-Fault Benefits for Fatal Car Accidents
When a Michigan resident dies as a result of injuries sustained in a fatal car accident in Michigan, his or her estate is entitled to certain personal insurance protection (PIP) benefits under Michigan’s No-Fault Act. Understanding the benefits available to the estate can be difficult, and requires diligence by the representative of the estate to ensure that these benefits are collected.
Under Michigan’s auto no-fault law, the dependents of an individual killed in a car accident are entitled to collect the following benefits:
Survivor’s Loss Benefits for the three-year period following the deceased’s death, including:
- The after-tax income that the deceased would have earned;
- The value of fringe benefits that the were available to the deceased and his/her family that are subsequently lost or diminished as a result of the deceased’s death;
- The value of any other activity of the deceased’s that resulted in the production of “tangible things of economic value”; and
- The same type of replacement services that are compensable in non-death cases.
Reasonable Funeral and Burial Expenses incurred as a result of the death.
The Michigan No-Fault Act places strict time restrictions on when a deceased individual’s dependants can collect no-fault benefits. First, the Act requires the dependants of an individual killed in a car accident to provide notice of the deceased’s death to his or her no-fault insurer within one year of the accident.
Additionally, the “one year back rule” holds that the dependants of an individual killed in a car accident may only recover no-fault benefits for the one year period immediately preceding the filing of a lawsuit. In essence, this rule requires that the dependents of the victim bring suit within one year of the death of the victim.
Because of these mandatory time restrictions, any dependent of a loved one killed in a car accident is encouraged to immediately contact an attorney who can work diligently to ensure that they receive the full slate of PIP benefits to which they are entitled.